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The Lake Tanganyika cichlid species assemblage: recent advances in molecular phylogenetics
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Evolution, Genomics and Systematics.
2008 (English)In: Hydrobiologia, ISSN 0018-8158, E-ISSN 1573-5117, Vol. 615, 5-20 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Lake Tanganyika is not the most species-rich of the Great East African Lakes, but comprises the greatest diversity of cichlid fishes in terms of morphology, ecology, and breeding styles. The lake contains a polyphyletic assemblage of cichlid lineages, which evolved from several ancient species that colonized the emerging lake some 9-12 million years ago. Based on morphological characteristics, the Tanganyikan cichlids have been classified into 12, or, more recently, 16 tribes, which are largely supported by molecular data. The radiations of East African cichlids are believed to be driven by complex interactions between extrinsic factors, such as climatic changes and geological processes, and intrinsic biological characteristics of the involved organisms. Diversification within different lineages occurred simultaneously in response to drastic habitat changes such as the establishment of lacustrine deep-water conditions 5-6 MYA and subsequent major lake-level fluctuations. This seems particularly true for the mouthbrooding lineages whereas the substrate breeders underwent a more gradual process of diversification. This review presents an account of the taxonomy and phylogeny of the Lake Tanganyika cichlid species assemblage, its relationship to the African cichlid fauna, key factors leading to the astonishing diversity and discusses recently proposed alternative age estimates for the Lake Tanganyika cichlid species assemblage.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 615, 5-20 p.
Keyword [en]
Adaptive radiation, Cichlidae, Diversification, Phylogeny, Speciation
National Category
Biological Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-149470DOI: 10.1007/s10750-008-9552-4ISI: 000259909900002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-149470DiVA: diva2:405003
Conference Information: 4th Symposium on Speciation in Ancient Lakes Freie Univ Berlin, Berlin, GERMANY, SEP 04-08, 2006 Available from: 2011-03-20 Created: 2011-03-20 Last updated: 2011-03-20Bibliographically approved

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